With the busy pace of life we lead today, it is only natural that many of us experience stress from time to time. However, some people suffer more with stress than others, and this can have a serious impact on quality of life.
People suffer from stress for all sorts of reasons from job related stress through to relationship problems, money worries, and sleep deprivation. Statistics were released last year showing the most common causes of stress and the percentage of the popular affected.
Fortunately, there are a number of steps that you can take in order to try and combat high stress levels. Of course, there are various traditional methods of coping with stress such as relaxation techniques, increasing the amount of sleep, getting more physical activity, and talking things through with someone. However, there are also some unique and very effective methods that you can use, one of which involves cats.
How can cats help?
So, just how can our furry friends help when it comes to easing stress levels?
Well, studies have been carried out with the results showing that cats can help to combat stress in a number of different ways. You may have heard stories or seen reports of people in various facilities who suffer from stress or depression being allowed to spend time with cats. This is because feline interaction can have a hugely positive effect.
It is claimed that you can benefit from increased calmness and improved mood by spending just 15-30 minutes with a cat.
The effect cats have on hormones:
- There is also evidence that the release of serotonin, which increases feelings of wellbeing, is increased as a result of spending time with a cat.
- In addition, the level of cortisol, which causes stress and hypertension, is reduced.
This combination means that cats can prove invaluable to those who are experiencing high levels of stress.
The great thing about using cats to help reduce stress levels is that this is a type of therapy that can work for any age group. Cats have been found to calm children down as well as benefit adults and elderly people. There are now even cat cafes where people can go to relax and enjoy a cup of coffee while petting the resident cats for increased relaxation.
Cats make great companions
One thing about cats is that they make great companions. Often, their independence leads to them being viewed as aloof and disinterested compared to dogs. However, while they are very independent creatures, they are also very loving. Many cats love nothing more than to snuggle up on your lap while purring. This in itself is very soothing and calming.
Studies show that stroking a cat is also a means of relieving stress. Cats are generally happy creatures and have relaxed attitudes when they are around loving owners. This is something that seems to rub off on owners, which could be part of the reason why they help to reduce stress levels.
The various studies that have been carried out over recent years have confirmed that cats can help to promote calm and relieve stress.
In addition to relieving stress and promoting calm, they are able to help reduce blood pressure and the risk of health problems associated with hypertension.
So, if you want to boost your health and reduce stress levels, bringing a cat into the home could be the perfect solution.
Does your cat help you feel more relaxed?
Let me know in the comments!